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Data Cube Indexing of Large-Scale Infosec Repositories
 by Martin Fong, Keith Skinner & Alfonso Valdes.

Analysts examining large-scale information security repositories for propagating network events are interested in quickly identifying temporal and spatial (IP address and/or port) regions containing interesting phenomena, or correlating events from different time periods. The size of these datasets strains current query capabilities provided by, for example, relational databases. We introduce a scalable, animated data cube representation and viewer, suitable for a broad range of observables, to permit coarsegrain detection and correlation in such data sets. We scale from the LAN to the Internet through flexible, locality-preserving hash algorithms mapping traffic source and destination (IP addresses or IP and port considered simultaneously). Data streams considered include inherently suspicious traffic such as packets rejected at a firewall, IDS alerts, or traffic to unused address space, as well as Netflow data. We display observables as intensity plots, where X and Y coordinates are the hashed source and target address and the intensity is proportional to traffic volume. Source and target address space may or may not be the same and may or may not be mapped the same way. Propagating events have distinct visual signatures that can be enhanced through matched filtering techniques. Future work will correlate cubes efficiently through cell-by-cell multiplication. An analyst will be able to, for example, examine whether plots representing two time periods (hours or days) exhibit similar patterns. Multiplication of a cube with its transpose permits identification of nodes that respond to potentially malicious probes. These data cubes permit coarse-grained detection and correlation without expensive data base queries.


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